Women Mean Business Magazine, WMB, held its 6th Annual Women Mean Business Conference & Awards on Monday October 1st in Dublin’s Shelbourne Hotel, St. Stephen’s Green. The event, which recognises the achievements of Ireland’s businesswomen, was officially opened by Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation Richard Bruton T.D:
“If in Ireland we had the same level of female entrepreneurship as in Australia, we would have over 34,000 extra entrepreneurs running businesses which they started in Ireland. This would potentially create large numbers of jobs, and displays clearly the importance of encouraging more women to get involved in business. That is why we recently launched a €250,000 fund aimed specifically at encouraging more women to start businesses, and that is why I am delighted to be involved in today’s event which celebrates the achievements of women in business. I commend all involved and wish them every success for the future”.
Four awards were presented on the day, with Julie O’Neill, Gilead Sciences Limited, taking the overall WMB Businesswoman of the Year Award 2012. WMB Founder Rosemary Delaney says: “As an entrepreneur I know first hand how necessary sheer determination and resolve are when succeeding in business today. I find it so inspirational to come in contact with such fantastic role models like Julie who heads up Gilead Sciences Limited. The winners today not only lead their own businesses with passion but also power the future success of our economy.”
Ann McGee, McGee Pharma International received the Enterprise Ireland WMB Female Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Barbara O’Connell, Acquired Brain Injury Ireland, received the Newstalk WMB Social Entrepreneur of the Year Award. Ann-Marie Holmes, Intel Ireland, received the WMB Woman in Technology Award.
The daylong event included some unique speakers to motivate and inspire including keynote speaker Dawn Gibbins MBE, CH4 Secret Millionaire, Philanthropreneur and Founder of Flowcrete – a global flooring company with a turnover reaching £50 million before she sold it. Inventor and Author Sharon Wright whose pitch on BBC’s Dragons’ Den had all Dragons vying to invest in her invention Magnamole. Also taking to the stage was Professor Susan Vinnicombe OBE, Cranfield School of Management – an expert on gender diversity on corporate boards, women’s leadership styles and author of the annual Female FTSE Report. The theme this year was ‘Power The Passion’ and the day included a panel discussion and facilitated networking with IFG Corporate Pensions.